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Sport Pakistan's Akmal eligible to play after ban is reduced

17:48  26 february  2021
17:48  26 february  2021 Source:   reuters.com

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Pakistan batsman Umar Akmal is eligible to play competitive cricket after the Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) reduced his ban for breaching the Pakistan Cricket Board ' s Anti-Corruption code, the board said on Friday. The middle-order batsman was suspended in February last year for failing to report approaches to him to engage in corrupt practices before the 2020 Pakistan Super League competition. He was initially banned for three years but an independent adjudicator halved the ban following an appeal by the player .

A Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) disciplinary committee banned Akmal for three years last April after he failed to report details of a match-fixing approach made to him during meetings with alleged bookies. The ban was later reduced to 18 months by an independent adjudicator. Pakistan cricket authorities hoping for a further reduction have filed an additional appeal over the case to the CAS. "It' s a big relief for Umar," the cricketer' s brother Kamran told AFP. "He wants to play cricket and return to the field." The PCB said he would be eligible to compete again after completing a rehabilitation programme.

LAHORE, Pakistan (Reuters) - Pakistan batsman Umar Akmal is eligible to play competitive cricket after the Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) reduced his ban for breaching the Pakistan Cricket Board's Anti-Corruption code, the board said on Friday.

FILE PHOTO: Pakistan's Akmal hits a six during a Twenty 20 cricket match against Sri Lanka in Colombo © Reuters/Dinuka Liyanawatte FILE PHOTO: Pakistan's Akmal hits a six during a Twenty 20 cricket match against Sri Lanka in Colombo Pakistan's Akmal hits a boundary during their first Twenty 20 cricket match against Sri Lanka in Colombo © Reuters/Dinuka Liyanawatte Pakistan's Akmal hits a boundary during their first Twenty 20 cricket match against Sri Lanka in Colombo

The middle-order batsman was suspended in February last year for failing to report approaches to him to engage in corrupt practices before the 2020 Pakistan Super League competition.

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Pakistani cricketer Umar Akmal salutes to media while he arrives at the Pakistan Cricket Board office in Lahore, Pakistan , Wednesday, July 29, 2020. An independent adjudicator has halved batsman Akmal ' s ban to 18 months for failing to report corrupt approaches before this year' s Pakistan Super League. That ban was halved after Akmal appealed to an independent adjudicator, before both Akmal and the PCB took the matter to the CAS. The PCB on Friday said the 30-year-old Akmal is now eligible to reintegrate into competitive cricket, subject to paying the fine, and also has to go through

A Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) disciplinary committee banned Akmal for three years last April after he failed to report details of a match-fixing approach made to him during meetings with alleged bookies. The ban was later reduced to 18 months by an independent adjudicator. Pakistan cricket authorities hoping for a further reduction have filed an additional appeal over the case to the CAS. "It' s a big relief for Umar," the cricketer' s brother Kamran told AFP. "He wants to play cricket and return to the field." The PCB said he would be eligible to compete again after completing a rehabilitation programme.

He was initially banned for three years but an independent adjudicator halved the ban following an appeal by the player.

The CAS has now reduced the ban to 12 months but asked the 30-year-old to pay a $27,000 fine and complete a rehabilitation programme under the board's anti-corruption code, the Pakistan Cricket Board said in a statement.

"I am ready and excited to play cricket again," Akmal told reporters. "It was tough being out and sitting at home with my bread and butter taken away."

Asked about his chances of playing for Pakistan again, Akmal said: "It's my job to play cricket and perform and it's up to them if they want to give me a chance."

(Reporting by Amlan Chakraborty in New Delhi, editing by Timothy Heritage)

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